Living My Olympic Dream: Let the Games Begin
The last day of processing was on February 8th, which was our busiest
day, processing more than 60 athletes and staff coming through to
collect their gear. At the end, we popped champagne to celebrate our
hard work. In an email thanking the staff, Beth Lathrop, United States Olympic Committee Sr. Recruiter and Team USA Processing Volunteer Manager provided some perspective on what they accomplished.
- In 5 daysof setup, we transformed an empty ballroom, conference room,
dining and indoor playground spaces into 2 retail stores, 6 sponsorship Kiosks, 3 media studios, 1 classroom, 1 photography studio, 1 dining room, 1 transportation command center, 1 volunteer hangout/storage room, 1 operations center.
- In 9 days,we processed 393 people: 215 athletes, 178 staff members.
- We pre-packed and delivered an additional 148 bags to athletes and staff
- We moved 1001 pieces of luggage, not including personal items, equipment and Ralph Lauren Tailoring bags
- We did all of this with less than 100 people: 25 sponsor reps, 35 USOC and NGB staff, 29 volunteers
One of the most memorable experiences I had volunteering for USA Team
Processing was getting to work with Alex Ferreira, professional Men’s
Freestyle skier who just won Silver at X-Games. PyeongChang is his
first Olympic Games and he was so down to earth, outgoing, genuine,
and took the time to get to know everyone. He was very thankful and appreciative. I took several pictures for Alex to share with his family, friends and personal social media accounts of him decked out in his Ralph Lauren gear. The next day I was told that Alex was here to see me and he had a gift. I walked up to the front and there he was with a bottle of wine and a note to thank me for all my help. These gestures were above and beyond and
really shows the type of person that Alex is. It is a memory I will
cherish forever. The next day he even posted on his personal Instagram
the pictures I took of him and said “I’m having myself a good time out
here in Ko Rea!! Thanks for the pics Jen!!!” I bought tickets to the
Men’s Freestyle Finals and hope to see Alex #GoForTheGold!
I had the privilege of working one on one with 5 time Olympian, Kelly Clark who
placed 4th in Women’s Snowboard Halfpipe. I also helped pack Chloe
Kim’s bag so it was ready before she arrived during team processing.
The Today show was at Team Processing, filming for two days. You can see me in the background of the video they produced. Over the course of the two weeks, I
networked with staff from USA Ski and Snowboard and at the end
they gave me a USA beanie from Burton that are exclusively for
athletes. I have been wearing it proudly!
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